27 January, 2020

How Woolworths is celebrating diversity

How Woolworths is celebrating diversity

Woolworths has highlighted its commitment to diversity in its 2018 Annual Report, with initiatives targeting refugees, LGBTI inclusion, pay parity and the indigenous community.  

"Our diversity and inclusion work is a manifestation of our purpose – by celebrating diversity in all its forms, we can create better experiences together, each and every day," the company noted.

Winning on the LGBTI front

Woolworths' commitment to LGBTI inclusion was recognised earlier this year when it became the first retail organisation to achieve Gold Tier Status in the Australian Workplace Equality Index Awards.

"Over the past year a great deal of work has been undertaken to progress LGBTI inclusion, including an organisation-wide policy review, hosting educational LGBTI events, holding training sessions for team members and leaders, entering into a sponsorship agreement with Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras and supporting marriage equality," the company noted. 

Helping displaced refugees

The Woolworths Refugee Employment program has been implemented in partnership with Community Corporate to provide employment opportunities for displaced refugees from Syria and the Middle East to contribute to successful settlements.

"The Woolworths Refugee Employment Program made significant strides in FY18 with three programs completed with a 100% employment conversion rate," the annual report revealed. "All 45 refugees have commenced employment in our Metro and Supermarket stores, with a goal to employ another 100 refugees over the next year."

Seeking gender equality

Further work was completed in the year on Woolworths' Pay Parity Project, with an additional 545 team members receiving a salary increase, further reducing the gender pay gap to 0.41%.

"We will continue to review pay parity across the Group as we strive to promote gender equality," the report noted.

"There is more work to do on increasing the representation of women in leadership at Woolworths Group which is
currently sitting at 32%. In order to improve on this, initiatives are underway to attract and retain high performing women in an effort to reach our target of 40% by 2020."

Supporting Indigenous employment

Another commitment achieved this year was Woolworths' Indigenous employment target, with the commencement of 1875 new Indigenous team members through the Resourcing the Future program.

The program achieved retention rate of 74%, with 54% of these team members located in regional or remote areas of Australia.

Endeavour sponsors Corporate Social Responsibility Award 

Endeavour Drinks Group is also the sponsor of The Drinks Association's inaugural Corporate Social Responsibility Award at the 2018 Australian Drinks Awards.

The Corporate Social Responsibility Award is new to the Australian Drinks Awards and has been introduced to acknowledge the work drinks companies are doing to promote positive social and environmental change.

Endeavour Drinks is keen to celebrate companies that are making a difference in the world of alcoholic beverages as well as sustainability.

"Customers expectations are changing and to be relevant as a brand and a retailer we have to do the right thing, we're all big businesses and with that comes big responsibilities," said Michael Jackson, Director - Merchandising, Marketing & Customer Insights at Endeavour Drinks Group.

Jackson said corporate social responsibility was core to the Endeavour Drinks Group's business philosophy.

"Aside from the contributions that our stores make to community organisations at a local level, we have a number of organisations that we partner with and to whom we contribute both financially and in-kind," he noted. "These include White Ribbon Australia, Beyond Blue and Jawun - an organisation that partners with major corporates on projects to build capability within Indigenous communities."

The 2018 Australian Drinks Awards will be held on Thursday, September 13, at The Ivy in Sydney.